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PlaceTech Visits | The Forge by Landsec

Rethinking construction from the ground up, developer Landsec and its partners are building the first offices to meet the UKGBC’s definition of net zero.

The Forge, a 139,000 sq ft development in London’s Bankside, is the first commercial office development to use an automated construction approach known as platform design for manufacturing and assembly (P-DfMA).


The Forge at a glance

  • Use: Office
  • Size: 139,000 sq ft
  • Developer: Landsec
  • Architect: Piercy & Co, Bryden Wood
  • Contractors: Mace, Sir Robert McAlpine
  • Completion: Early 2023

Inspired by the manufacturing industry, the process relies on standardised, reusable components built offsite and assembled using temporary supports.

As the first development of its kind, The Forge was an experiment for all the teams involved. Between the pandemic hitting just as construction started and the teething problems inherit in trying a whole new approach to construction, the process was not without its challenges.

But as completion approaches, that experiment seems to have paid off. The design is the first to comply with the UKGBC’s framework definition of a net zero building and should be operationally carbon neutral once The Forge opens.

For Landsec, the goal is to inspire developers to rethink the basics. With an example to look to, others can build on the lessons learned, perhaps avoiding some of the pitfalls, and collectively bring construction into a new, cleaner, automated era.

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